April 2016 IMW Newsletter

Supporter Summit 2016 

           A few MWs and Supporters at the recent Supporters' Summit in Porto 

  Study Programme News

Burgundy Student Trip - March 2016

                             Burgundy Student Trip

Richard Bampfield MW: 'This visit for MW students to Burgundy as guests of Albert Bichot is now in its seventh year and Bichot are delighted that it continues to prove so popular.  Once again this year’s group reminded us of what wonderful ambassadors for the IMW the students are - their outstanding wine knowledge is only matched by their desire to learn more.'

Odney Seminar - February 2016 

Rod Smith MW wrote: 

'It was with slightly mixed feelings that I received an invitation from Annette Scarfe MW to help out at Odney this year. I had already just ‘done’ Rust with the lovely Caro Maurer MW, and I’m due to be travelling pretty much continuously until July, so it was with a heavy heart that I gave up a precious weekend at home.

But, with great serendipity, it was a fantastic time. Superlatively organised by Annette (overall), Phil (Reedman, theory only) and Matthew (Hemming, practical only), and staged at the wonderfully appropriate Waitrose centre at Odney, whose hospitality and accommodation is perhaps only let down by the temperature at which they serve the cheese, and its periodic inability to cope with British rainfall (apparently – I missed that one.)
There was a great mix of students. Stage 2 ‘first timers’ who presumably couldn’t, wouldn’t ,or had heard-about-the-mattresses-and-didn’t-want-to, go to Bordeaux and people in various stages of wearied resignedness from bright-eyed to having passed one part or t’other, possibly several decades ago (or so it seemed to them).
A great part of the education process is – for me – about generating and rekindling enthusiasm for the subject, and the single worst aspect of the whole MW education “journey” is its ability to kill or diminish the love for wine, which was the point in the first place, and which is easily lost when caught in an expensive cycle of retaking exams and re-doing seminars.
Well, we had a good old go at sorting that out, as well as hopefully providing some guidance and living evidence that it has to be possible because (some of us, even!) have passed.
A very fair and interesting set of tasting papers, the wines for which I had encountered previously at Rust. 
I even got the opportunity, of having my marking marked by John Hoskins MW. Which was precisely as nerve-racking as it sounds, but in the words of Basil Fawlty, I think I got away with it alright.
I am confident that I saw quite a lot – and an above average percentage, of Masters-of-Wine-to-be, and that, surely, is the point.
A massive thank you must be made to all my fellow MWs who attended, some for the first time, but mainly - for their brilliant efforts  - to Olly, Marianne and Robyn from the IMW office, for co-ordinating what looked to me like nothing other than a logistical nightmare the likes of God telling Noah he might be needing more than just an umbrella.'

North American Seminar & Information Day 2016

Nancy Johnson - North American Officer wrote: 

'The 2016 North American Seminar was held in San Francisco January 15-20 at the Hyatt Fisherman's Wharf. The seminar was one of the largest North American seminars in years and brought together 94 students (39 Stage 1 and 55 Stage 2) from 14 different countries and 29 MWs.

In addition to bright and early practical sessions each morning and diverse afternoon theory sessions and more practical tastings for our Practical Only students, many other diverse lectures were offered. Lecture topics included a Viticulture and Vinification Review by Robert Betz MW; a well received session on Approaching the Practical from Practical Chair Philip Tuck MW; an overview of current Australian Wines presented by Mark Davidson from Wine Australia; a Business of Wine session presented by Annette Alvarez-Peters, Mary Ewing-Mulligan MW, DC Flynt MW and Mary Gorman-McAdams MW; a panel on Vineyard Development with Robert Betz MW and Amy Christine MW; a presentation on the Structure and Beauty of Wine highlighting molecular photography from Dr. Sondra Barrett; a talk from Dr. Patrick Hunt from Stanford University on How Wine Civilized History; a lecture on Postmodern Winemaking from Clark Smith; and sessions on Regionality in Marketing with Dr. Damien Wilson and Liz Thach MW from Sonoma State University and Wine on the Web with Karena Breslin from Constellation Brands, Mike Osborn from wine.com and Sarah Jane Evans MW.

On several evenings, students and MWs alike were able to enjoy a number of wonderful activities including a Walk-Around Tasting and fabulous buffet hosted by Jackson Family Wines, an Australian Wine Walk-Around Tasting hosted by Wine Australia, an Interactive Tasting and Reception with Napa Valley Winemakers hosted by the Napa Valley Vintners in the upper floor of Boudin Bakery and Café overlooking Fisherman's Wharf and an amazing dinner hosted by Robert Mondavi Winery prepared by their very own chef and paired with Robert Mondavi current releases and library wines.Just prior to the residential seminar, nearly 40 students took part in an adjunct educational program hosted by the Napa Valley Vintners in Napa, CA in partnership with the IMW and presented by Bob Betz MW and DC Flynt MW.

This intensive Napa Valley 2- day Viti-Vini program covered Theory Papers 1-4 topics and included vineyard and winery visits, a fabulous welcome dinner at Nickel and Nickel Winery hosted by a number of Napa vintners and the Napa Valley Vintners and an evening meal with small groups of students hosted by Napa vintners at local Napa Valley restaurants.During the seminar the Institute was fortunate to be able to reach out to over 30 potential new students at the Saturday Introduction to the Institute of Masters of Wine session presented by Olivier Chapman, Sarah Jane Evans MW and Doug Frost MW. The room was filled to capacity with many eager attendees that were full of questions.At the conclusion of the seminar, students and MWs were able to attend the Third Annual IMWNA Bordeaux tasting of the 2011 vintage and be a part of an amazing structured learning experience hosted by Nicholas Paris MW at E. & J. Gallo in Modesto, CA where nearly 25 students were able to experience a day-and-a-half on-site program that provided insights into Gallo's approach to viticulture, winemaking, quality assurance and control, sales and marketing.

The IMW is fortunate to be able to offer the residential seminar in the Bay Area, as it is a location that enables San Francisco conveniences and wine country partnerships and interactions, not to mention amazing food and culture!

Event News

Official Berry Bros Last year's Member Drinks evening was a real success. The Institute has decided to host another get together, on April 26th 2016. Berry Bros. & Rudd, one of our Principal Supporters, have kindly agreed to host us at their lovely headquarters in London’s St James's Street. 

We really hope you will come along to this informal drinks, and spend time with your fellow MWs.
It will take place from 6-8pm. Please bring a bottle.
If you would like to attend, but have not yet registered, please contact Camilla Fitzgerald by the 18th April 2016

40th Anniversary of the Judgement of Paris Tasting - June 2016

                Paris Tasting

0n Thursday 23rd June, 2016, Christie's Wine Department will be honouring the famous 1976 tasting known as the Judgement of Paris, in which premium Bordeaux red wines were pitched against top Californian Cabernet Sauvignons and white Burgundies against Californian Chardonnays.In this landmark event, the panel of distinguished French judges unwittingly gave top marks to two Californian wines: the 1973 Stag's Leap Wine Cellars S.L.V. Cabernet Sauvignon and the 1973 Chateau Montelena Winery Napa Valley Chardonnay. Organised by Steven Spurrier, it has been described as one of the most influential wine tastings ever held as it had a profoundly revolutionary and positive effect on the production and prestige of 'New World' wine.

We are delighted to announce that the current winemakers: Marcus Notaro of Stag's Leap Wine Cellars and Matt Crafton of Chateau Montelena Winery will each present five vintages of their iconic wines and give insights about the philosophy of their respective wineries including the changes they have undergone over the decades. They will talk about what the Judgment of Paris meant to the winery at the time, and why it matters today.

There will also be the opportunity to quiz them on a wide variety of other topics including:

• Climate change and coping with water shortage both in the vineyard and the cellar

• Vine and rootstock selection in the light of climate change

• The control of alcohol in winemaking

• The role of technology in artisan wine-making

• The advantages and disadvantages of Appellation and the AVA system.

Nancy Gilchrist MW said: "I am extremely pleased to welcome Marcus and Matt to speak not only about these famous events of forty years ago but also to give their views about what we might expect in another forty years from now. This is an excellent opportunity to discuss some of the key issues facing winemakers and viticulturists on the West Coast".

Please join us at 2:30pm on Thursday 23rd June, 2016, in the beautiful surroundings of the Duke Street Gallery in Christie's King Street.

(Nearest tubes: Green Park and Piccadilly Circus)

Please note that tickets are highly subsidised for Members and Students, and this is not an event open to outside guests.

Tickets for MW’s are priced at £30 and £40 for MW Students.

To register for a ticket, please get in touch with Camilla Fitzgerald

ICCWSThere are two remaining special rate MW and Student tickets left for the International Cool Climate Wine Symposium! To book your spot, please get in touch with Camilla Fitzgerald 

For more details on the conference, please follow this link for their official website. 


Trips News

 Alto Adige 2016 MW Trip - 'Red Varieties' 

Alto Adige

The Consorzio of Alto Adige / Sud Tirol wines, a supporter of the Institute of Masters of Wine, is offering as part of their support for the Institute a trip to Alto Adige for up to 10 Masters of Wine with preference for those actively involved in the Education, Examination, Symposium or Events Programme.
The trip this year will take place from 15th to the 18th September 2016 – this is just after the Annual General Meeting in London on the 14th September 2016 (for those of you who choose to come from far away, the timing is ideal).
The focus of this year’s trip is on the 'Red Varieties'.
Italy’s northernmost region is mostly known for its white wines, but more than 40% of the winegrowing area is planted with red varieties. The dominant grapes for the red wines are the indigenous Lagrein and Schiava which find their best terroir in Alto Adige’s warm spots and the Pinot Noir which is planted in cooler slopes at the foot of high Alpine peaks.
Alto Adige is one of Italy’s smallest wine growing regions accounting for less than 1% of the country’s total production. Around 5.300 hectares of vineyards are cultivated in different climatic zones with variable soils, and at elevations ranging from 200 to 1,000 m above sea level. 
The places will be allocated by region as follows (and randomly within each region):
Australasia: 2
North America: 2
Europe and Africa: 2
UK: 2
There will also be an additional 2 places available dependent on numbers. 
The Institute, via support from the Consorzio, will contribute to the travel costs of MWs to Alto Adige as follows:

Australia /NZ: up to £800
Asia/USA/Africa: up to £400
Europe including UK: up to £150
Please note, if anyone receives a contribution from the above and for any reason pulls out of the trip, he or she will be required to refund the money, so it is essential that you have your own travel insurance that covers cancellation in such circumstances.
The full programme will be released soon. Attendees must be in Verona by 12pm on the 15th September, and are free to leave in the morning of the 18th September. 
To apply:
If you are active in the above areas, and would like to apply for this, please send an email to Camilla Fitzgerald no later than close of business UK time on Friday 22nd April.
We will let you know no later than close of business on Monday 2nd May who has been successful in the draw.

Trentodoc MW Trip  - 'Wines from the Mountains' 

Trentodoc 2016

Discover the Trentino and Trentodoc Italian Sparkling champenoise wine from the mountains.
The program, hosted by one of the Institute’s Supporters will look to improve the knowledge of Trentodoc, its labels, its producers, the realities working in Trentino.
The trip will be from the 10th to the 13th November 2016. 
At Palazzo Roccabruna will be provided a free tasting of approximately 110 labels of the 43 sparkling cellars of Trentodoc (with the producers). Masters of Wine will get the chance to visit the vineyards together with a researcher from Fondazione Mach and there will also be a seminar (the ID card of Trentodoc) at Fondazione Mach with old vintages.
There are 15 spaces available for this trip.
The official programme will be distributed in a few weeks, but if you would like to sign up, please get in touch with Camilla Fitzgerald

Here is a litle bit of history of Trentodoc: The history of Trentodoc began in the early 20th century with Giulio Ferrari, a student at the Imperial Regia Scuola Agraria in San Michele. After many study trips to France, he returned to Trento and was the first, in the heart of the city, to start producing a small quantity of high-quality Metodo Classico sparkling wine. After that, many others followed suit, and in 1993 “Trentodoc" was acknowledged as the first Metodo Classico sparkling wine in Italy, one of the first wordlwide. Today, Trentodoc, which brings together 43 producers, is continuously expanding and sparkling wine producers follow their own personal philosophy, giving this Metodo Classico different nuances, suited to all tastes, occasions and pairings. With a single common thread: quality.

The suitable vines for Trentodoc, mainly trained using the Trentino pergola system, grow at altitudes between 200 and 800 metres, where significant temperature fluctuations occur between day and night. The vines and grapes involved in making the wine offer the distinguishing features of elegance, freshness and persistency. Today, Trentodoc can also proudly boast its “ID card”, which certifies its origin and bond with the territory, the outcome of research by the Fondazione Mach in San Michele all’Adige, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia.

The quality of Trentodoc “Sparkling wine from the mountains” is entrusted to production regulations, which establish stringent standards and inspections throughout the production chain. The grapes used to make it are Chardonnay, whose grape variety is one of the most cultivated in the province of Trento (about 26% of the vine-covered surface), Pinot Nero, Pinot Bianco and Pinot Meunier. The grapes are hand-picked and the “base wine” ages slowly in the bottle, from a minimum of 15 months, a minimum of 36 for a reserve, to 10 years on the lees for the more refined and aged Trentodoc wines.

The collective trademark Trentodoc was established in June 2007, after a process that involved representatives of the production sector, institutions (in particular the Autonomous Province of Trento and Trentino Marketing) and the Chamber of Commerce of Trento. The two “Os” visible on the trademark are intended to represent the “remuage” movement of the bottle, typical of the Metodo Classico process.

The Istituto Trento Doc, founded in 1984 and representing 43 sparkling wine producers of Trentino today, is the promoter of the brand.


Member's News

 John Vaughan-Hughes MW 

John sadly passed away on the 19th February 2016. He was surrounded by his friends and family. 

Here are a few words from John's son, Tim, Lynne Coyle MW, Patrick Millet MW, Angela Muir MW and Sebastian Payne MW  

Tim Vaughan-Hughes writes: 

'John retained his love of good food and fine wine throughout his life, and certainly believed in the civilising effects of an excellent meal and a well-chosen bottle. He spoke about his wine trips abroad with the Masters of Wine with great affection, and was always keen to learn more about the business. He introduced friends and family to a huge and exciting variety of grape and vintage, and loved to share his knowledge with passion and unfailing modesty. The family home became a place where visitors were guaranteed a taste of something unusual or special combined with a warm welcome.'

Lynne Coyle MW: 
'When I met John for the first time in Edinburgh in 1988, he was my first contact with a Master of Wine and the Institute. 
I had just joined the wine trade through Oddbins, and John in those days undertook all of the wine training for the group. Travelling the length of the UK, many of the Oddbins team benefited from his passionate and patient approach to wine tasting. 
I was fortunate enough to be able to taste with John on more than one occasion, and I found that he brought the same energy to his sessions whether we were six or twenty students. 
John has left his legacy. Looking around the industry today, many of my ex-Oddbins colleagues in important trade roles would have been taught by John. 
Being a Master of Wine, John was also keen on educating his students about the Institute. I remember being fascinated by the idea, that my new found wine trade career had such a prestigious professional body that one could aspire to. 
When I reflected on the news of John’s passing, it took me back to my early days in the industry and thought about how fortunate I had been to have had John as my example.'
Patrick Millet MW:
'I do remember tasting about a hundred casks of (mainly) Domecq Double Century Sherry, several days a week, starting at 9.00 am in the morning and from time to time John, as the responsible for quality at Luis Gordon and Co. in the UK, would join us in Guildford. Life became a little easier when larger shipping containers began to appear!
I also remember his keen interest in the Institute's Library and keeping Council up to date with his discussions with the Guildhall Library and how it could best be promoted to MW students.
But what I most vividly remember about John, is during an MW trip to California, we had a free evening in San Francisco. John was talking passionately about a jazz club in the city, that sounded like a must-do place to visit and he was looking for other interested folk to join him. It turned out that he was a great fan of jazz. The club was called 'Earthquake McGoons' and he informed us that the Turk Murphy Jazz Band was playing there and that their style of Dixieland/Traditional jazz would be well worth the detour. So it was that several of us accompanied him and we had a fabulous evening together. Sadly it closed in 1984, but the memory of the evening lingers on and John's enthusiasm at sharing his knowledge with us, does too. 
A lovely, caring and gentle man who will be missed by those who knew him.'
Sebastian Payne MW:
'A very civilised man, who knew a great deal about sherry and the byways of France, which he used to walk carrying a stout stick to ward off dogs and an orange for lunch before a good dinner at his destination.'
Angela Muir MW:
'I remember John at the regular Wine Magazine tastings we used to host at the beginning of the 1990's. He was hugely experienced, enthusiastic and benign and always a welcome sight.'

Emma Symington MW gave birth to a baby girl on January 29th. She is named Sophia. Congratulations from everyone at the Institute. 

'Applications of Ultrasound in the Beverage Industry' 

Dermot Nolan MW has had a chapter published in a book called 'Applications of Ultrasound in the Beverage Industry'. 

Please follow this link to know more about the book. 

If you would like to purchase a hardcopy version of the book, there is a special 40% discount on all pre-publication orders. If you would like to take advantage of this offer, please email Tricia Worthington at contribcopy.hub@novapublishers.com and enter Prepub40 in the subject line of the email. Additionally, if you send the website listing to any colleagues or libraries having an interest in the field, they can also apply a special 20% discount on all prepublication orders as well. If you would like to take advantage of this offer, please email Tricia Worthington at contribcopy.hub@novapublishers.com and enter Special20 in the subject line of the email. 

Book by Steve Charters MW and Liz Thach MW 

Book'Best practices in Global Wine Tourism' is a collection of fifteen case studies from around the world describing methods used by highly successful wine regions and wineries. Learn how innovative wine professionals turned challenges into successes in establishing new wine regions, attracting customers, creating collaborative relationships with stakeholders, preserving the environment, and establishing measurements for wine tourism.

Enjoy stories about wine tourism around the world, including France, Italy, Argentina, China, the USA, New Zealand, Australia,and other wine regions. Edited by Liz Thach MW and Stephen Charters MW, two veteran wine tourism researchers and professors of wine business, this book is very useful for wine hospitality managers, researchers, wine students, and enthusiasts.

Dr. Steve Charters MW is Director of Research in the School of Wine and Spirits Business, Dijon/Burgundy School of Business in Dijon, France. He was previously Professor of Champagne Management at Reims Management School and before that taught at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia.

Dr. Liz Thach MW (pronounced “Tosh”) is the Distinguished Professor of Wine and a Professor ofManagement at Sonoma State University where she teaches in both the undergraduate and Wine MBA programs.

Member Benefits

GuildSomm are kindly sharing a code with Members of the Institute, giving them the opportunity to join their membership community for free. Guildsomm have been doing this with Master Sommeliers, and wish to extend it to Masters of Wine aswell. 

'Hello from GuildSomm! We're reaching out to invite you to join our membership community, free of charge. GuildSomm, also known as the Guild of Sommeliers, is an international membership organization for sommeliers and wine professionals. We promote wine education through our study guides, articles, videos, podcasts, and a compendium that includes wine law information, producer profiles, maps, and more. We also encourage community and conversation between our members through online discussions and in-person events.

We've been working on new content that we think you'll enjoy. Our study forums, a popular resource among CMS students, now include a specific forum for WSET/MS students. We are also expanding our content on subjects of interest to WSET and MW students and those who hold these certifications. In the past, we've commissioned several feature articles from Masters of Wine and hope to do more of this moving forward—so let us know if you have a great idea for an article!
Our ultimate goal is to provide a forum for thoughtful dialogue about our industry that is compelling to wine professionals of all levels and types of certification. We'd love to have you join the conversation.

You can sign up for a free membership on our website, using the code MWONLY where prompted. Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions! We hope to see you on GuildSomm soon.' 

MW Blogs and Websites 

It has been suggested that the Institute maintains a directory of MW Blogs and Websites. If you blog, or would like to lead people to your website, please let us know and we will publish a list on the IMW Website. 

Send anything that you would like to be included to:




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